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Cake plates and callings: third wave feminism, falling in love and neuroeconomics

July 8th, 2004 · No Comments

Via email I found this Rachael Combe piece in Elle magazine: The Guilty Bride described how her feelings about marriage and weddings have changed with time.

But that’s the truth: It’s as if I’ve found my calling. Ever since O. proposed, I’ve found it hard to think about anything but him and our wedding. I float through each day on a cloud of white tulle. At night, visions of centerpieces dance in my head. And when I can’t fall asleep out of sheer anticipation, I watch O. sleep and marvel at my luck that I found him—so sweet, solid, funny, smart, and handsome. He gets flushed, like children do, when he sleeps. His skin makes me think of ripe fruit, of nectarines, of peaches, of cherries. I want to eat him whole. I want to embrace the world. I want to tap-dance down the street and sing show tunes from the rooftops. I’ve never been happier…and that makes me sad. Was I lying to myself all those single years? Am I betraying myself now? Or am I just growing up and moving on?

I’ve never been crazy about cake plates or made marshmellow frosting since our marriage. I also want to reassure readers that my husband and I do not play the “me-Tarzan you-Jane game” described in the piece. But I do think it’s great to delight in domesticity: I’m more of a cookie maven than a cake-maker myself. And I do see becoming a wife as part of finding my calling – just as I think Ted would say becoming a husband was part of finding his calling too. Cutlery, cake plates and white dresses or no, love consumes your life, as Rachael Combe described so vividly in the paragraph above. Marriage is a calling. I can’t say that I can relate to everything she said, or how she changed from one extreme to the other, but I think the article presents an interesting first-person picture of “third wave feminism” meeting modern-day (or rather traditional) marriage and the timelessness of falling head over heels in love….nothing has ever felt so right

It occurred to me though, that instead of consulting a therapist for assurance, perhaps this guilty bride should have consulted an neuroeconomist. Perhaps this study on the effect of love on the brain explains her experience… or maybe the study says simply that love goes beyond reason and can make you change your mind…love makes you crazy…for cake plates (?!) big white dresses and men who resemble nectarines…:-)

Tags: marriage